Short Stories 91 — Ethos of Man (Part 31)
That morning I came home just to check on mother. I was worried because she was alone and I wanted to make sure she is fine. Arthen stayed at Beth’s place, while I decided to here. We had training lessons in the afternoon, so I was supposed to leave early too.
“Hello, Mother. Where are you?” I yelled as I entered the house. And I got a quick reply, “So you haven’t yet forgotten your mother haa?” She seems mad.
“Sorry. We were busy at Beth’s place.” I did not tell my mother what we were doing as it seemed like a bad idea. So I just told her, I am working at Beth’s place. And in return, she teaches me how to swing a sword. Arthen has also not told what he does during the daytime, but his mother does not care either. At least that is what he feels.
“Have you been eating properly?” I asked here. And she replied, “Yes Sir. I have been taking proper care of myself. But what about you sir?” She really thinks she is funny. “I am fine. Beth also gives us food, you know. We had a celebration yesterday,”
“What was that for?” She asked to which I had no reply. I just spilled without thinking. “It wa…It was her birthday. And we had lots of food.”
“Good. At least she is taking care of you. That makes me happy.”
“Do you want me to get anything? I have these with me.” and showed her a bag of bronze coins that Beth gave me like a paycheck for the job.
“Where did you get those coins from?”
“I worked a little for her. And so she paid me.”
“Okay. You better not be stealing it.”
“No mother. I am not.”
“Fair enough. Kepp it. I don’t want anything. Go and use it for whatever you want.” she replied.
I stayed with her till the afternoon. We had our lunch and I told her I will be leaving. She was sad that said, “Are you already leaving? Fine take care of yourself.” After having lunch, I left the house. But before leaving I thought I might tell Artheen’s mother that he is safe as she too hasn't seen Arthen in two days.
So I left my house and walked 20 mins down the road to Arthen’s place. Thinks were looking very bad. Their house was barely standing. It had so many cracks in it, that it seemed like it may fall any second. The color of the house was dulled to a point where it felt like it wasn't colored in years. It is usually a ritual where every two to three years the houses are colored outside and inside.
I knocked on the door. Arthen's mother stepped pot. She really seemed unhealthy. “Hello, aunty. I came here to tell you that Arthen is doing good. He is busy with a certain task and asked me to come and visit you.”
She smiled and said, “That is a lie. Corvin. He does not care and she closed the door.” Without saying anything. Something was surely wrong between them. I surely do not know the entire story. But their relationship is not what it used to be. I pleasantly remember the memories of Arthen’s mother as a caring woman but this was just too distant. She did not ask anything. As if she did not care. Maybe later I will talk to Arthen.
And just like that, I left. The entire trip I was thinking about what had happeneed. Because she seemed like a different person.